Homeless Advocate: A penny for the homeless! A penny is all we ask. Everyone is ignoring me over a penny. Don’t laugh at me. It’s not funny. –Times Square
A hobo stumbles into the store, yelling things and making everyone uncomfortable. Suddenly, he stumbles upon the rack with copies of the New York Times, an image of Iraq on the front page. He stares in silence for a moment, and says: You think it’s bad being homeless? Imagine being in Fallujah! –Starbucks, 59 St. & 9th Ave. Overheard by: Andrea Two hobos are drinking malt liquor from paper bags. Hobo #1 shakes his head in dismay: …I tell you, I tell you–that’s why they’ll [sic] never be peace in the Middle East. –29th St. & 2nd Ave. Overheard by: Tricia Karsay
Cracked-out hobo, watching crazy hobo yelling in the distance: What the hell is his problem?
Bag lady: I don't know, must be on some drugs or suttin'. Damn, I'm so glad we not like that!
Overheard by: Ilikecandy
White man selling stories: You wanna hear a story?
20-something white guy: What's it about?
White man selling stories: It's about a pirate, his parrot, and cyborgs.
20-something white guy: Okay.
White man selling stories: First, are you familiar with robots?
Overheard by: Human Being
Woman to friend: So you're back in New York again.
Hobo drinking Starbucks, passing by: This isn't New York. (pause) This is heaven.
–79th St & Broadway
Overheard by: Katherine
30-something to friend: I can't believe you'd have sex with that homeless person.
Friend: Well, they have to have sex with someone!
–Waverly Place & 6th Ave
Old black hobo: Folks… Look inside your heart. I am hungry and I am homeless. Please help me with some food or something. Look inside your heart.
(young black teenager keeps waving a subway sandwich in his face while hobo continues to rant)
Old black hobo: Look inside your heart. I am so hungry. Just look inside your heart!
Young black teenager, real pissed off: Sucka, look inside this bag! There's a sandwich in here!
Vaguely-homeless woman: You faggot!
Vaguely-homeless man: That's “mister faggot” to you!
–Discarded Couch, 2nd Ave & Houston
Old Jewish man: My doorman doesn't like me.
Younger retired Jewish man with dog: Why?
Old Jewish man: If I told you, you wouldn't believe it. I had a bunch of newspapers I had to throw out, but I had to put them in the recycling bin. So I was opening it up when a black woman said to me, “aw, sir, you don't have to go through the garbage!” and she gave me twenty dollars!
Younger retired Jewish man with dog: You didn't keep it, did you?
Old Jewish man: She dashed away down the stairs! I had to.
Younger retired Jewish man with dog: And the doorman saw that?
Old Jewish man: Uh-huh.
–Chase Bank, Queens Blvd
Drunken skinny pretty girl: Why is she so mean? I mean I'm a skinny pretty girl. She should not be mean to me!
–Halloween Party, Tribeca
Drunken hobo to girl leaving Sephora: Let me tell ya how to look beautiful. Fill ya buckets with money. Bucketfulla money makes ya look beautiful.
Overheard by: Lillian
Voice on loudspeaker: Last call for pretty man. Last call to board for pretty man.
Overheard by: Jen
60-something woman to tenor, after La Traviata: Finally, an Alfredo who is good-looking!
–Stage Door, Metropolitan Opera
Hobo: I was voted best-looking bum by bum weekly 1996.
–45th & 3rd